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Philip W.

Philip W.

Joined on 09/30/09

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 10
Most Favorable Review

Fantastical drive

OCZ Vertex Series 2.5" 60GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) OCZSSD2-1VTX60G
OCZ Vertex Series 2.5" 60GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) OCZSSD2-1VTX60G

Pros: Very fast Sequential reads over 180MB/s in a "used" state Sequential writes over 120MB/s in a "used" state Drive benched with AS SSD

Cons: None I suppose cost, but considering the performance increase you can see over a conventional hard drive they're well worth the money

Overall Review: The previous poster is treating SSDs like a scary, foreign, barren battlefield where only the brave and experienced dare tread. Maybe several months ago he'd be right, but not now. In my mind TRIM was the turning point required for SSDs to go mainstream. No need for manual garbage collection, you can just use the drive as you would any other and maintain a consistent level of performance. I didn't do anything special with or to this drive. I threw it in a system, installed Windows 7 and used it. OCZ has been shipping these drives with its TRIM-supporting 1.40 firmware preloaded for a while now. IT's only if you plan on using a MS OS other than Windows 7 or multiple SSDs in RAID that you need to concern yourself with flashing any other firmware. Aligning isn't a bad idea, but not necessary. Defragmenting is a mostly ridiculous concern when you consider that SSDs purposefully fragment files written as a form of wear-leveling. Very solid OS drive. Would buy again.

Most Critical Review

Dead in 3 months

hec HP585DB 585 W ATX12V Power Supply - Power Cord Included
hec HP585DB 585 W ATX12V Power Supply - Power Cord Included

Pros: Cheap

Cons: Failed after 3 months

Overall Review: PSU is completed dead. I was putting together a cheap build for someone, trying to save them some money, so I bought this thing. And now I'm kicking myself because I'm the one always telling OTHER people not to buy cheap power supplies. It's not as if the power supply was heavily taxed. It was used in an Athlon II X2 250 build with integrated graphics; not demanding in the least. Yet it still croaked in short order. You don't have to spend a lot of money on a power supply, but don't buy something like this which is cheaply built and meant to turn a quick buck. It won't last you any serious amount of time. Replaced this power supply with a 450W GS series BFG unit. Far better built, much better choice, and I found it for the same cost.

Economical and Flexible

COUGAR QBX Black Mini-ITX Ultra-Compact Pro Gaming Case
COUGAR QBX Black Mini-ITX Ultra-Compact Pro Gaming Case

Pros: - Smart use of available space to fit in drives and fans - Reasonable number of options for cooling configurations - Clean look, appears more premium than it is

Cons: - Ventilation on all sides makes it so every fan is heard regardless of case orientation - Overall dimensions are only 9 cm shorter than a traditional Micro ATX tower (which can also take "full length" GPUs)

Overall Review: This is a more than reasonable product that checks lots of boxes, but what is special about the Mini-ITX market if every ITX chassis is nearly as large or larger than a Micro ATX tower? Is there some consensus that the average PC builder is too stupid to look up graphics card lengths or what SFX and TFX power supplies are? Mini-ITX used to be about building the tightest rig, fitting the most power and heat you can cram into the tiniest box possible. It feels like it doesn't have an identity anymore. There's certainly no charm. Mini-ITX just became the new Micro ATX. If you really need to save 9cms in vertical height then this is a perfectly decent chassis.

Perfect size, decent price

Winsis Wi-01 Black SGCC / ABS Mini-ITX Tower Computer Case 200W Power Supply
Winsis Wi-01 Black SGCC / ABS Mini-ITX Tower Computer Case 200W Power Supply

Pros: I hesitantly give this chassis 4 eggs, but I'll cover the positive first: * Fantastic size. Extremely compact, especially if used on its side. Perfect HTPC. Could easily tuck behind a TV (or even strap a VESA mount to it) and have an external DVD/Blu-Ray drive sitting discretely amongst your other A/V components * Can fit a 2.5" and 3.5" drive; great setup for SSD + HDD * Inexpensive, even when not on sale * Able to squeeze an 80mm fan into the bottom of the chassis; acts as a far better exhaust than the pathetic 60mm(?) fan and helps focus airflow through the chassis

Cons: Here's where it gets sticky..... * Included PSU useless for anything other than an Atom build (not a con, just be aware of that) * The tiny fan at the top-front of the chassis is loud and useless. I removed it and covered the opening to redirect airflow * Expansion slot is not large enough, ie. incorrectly cut. The opening is neither tall nor wide enough to access the HDMI port of my Radeon 5450. I had to "dremel" several mms off one side, and 1 cm out of the top of the slot. That's pretty bad. Certainly not tested with any range of expansion cards. * With any expansion card installed airflow through the chassis is reduced to nothing, even with the 60mm fan up top. Not only that, but any card that produces any amount of heat (graphics card) is exhausting directly into the power supply. With an Atom build it might be tolerable, but anything larger be wary. *Front panel plastic cover is difficult to remove, and after multiple removals of the drive cage the front of the chassis is

Overall Review: So. Even with the problems I've encountered I still like (or tolerate) this case. It's more-or-less designed with Atom in mind, but other builds are possible. I replaced the PSU with a Seasonic 300W 80+ unit whose fan is completely silent. Grabbed a Gigabyte H55N-USB3 and a Core i3 530. Was using a Radeon 5450 but removed it due to airflow constraints; it's fine at idle but the system gets quite hot under load. I also installed a Thermaltake Slim X3 HSF with the intention of mounting a 120mm fan to the side panel (plenty of clearance with that HSF), but the vent holes on the panel are too small and widely spaced and make said fan very noisy. Thinking about cutting out the vent and installing a fan grill; with that addition airflow may be sufficient, but I'm not sure if I want to bother. Overall it's a cheap (in both ways) chassis, but the concept and size are great. I think they should put proper 80mm fan grills on the top AND bottom and ship the case without a PSU at the same price

One good pair, one bad pair

GeIL 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 (PC3 10660) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model GV34GB1333C9DC
GeIL 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 (PC3 10660) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model GV34GB1333C9DC

Pros: Spiffy heatspreader

Cons: One of two pairs of modules I purchased failed both PC Check and Memtest86+, however Memtest only seemed to consistently fail when both sticks in said pair where installed in the machine. The other pair passed any and all diagnostics.

Overall Review: The other pair of these I purchased works fine. Despite the number of reported problems here in addition to my own I suppose I'll still give this item 2 eggs; At least one pair worked.

As slow as.... very slow things...

Foxconn H55MX-S LGA 1156 Intel H55 HDMI Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
Foxconn H55MX-S LGA 1156 Intel H55 HDMI Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Serial port. Stable.

Cons: Same problem as Benjy; the board works but regardless of the type of drive connected it is EXTREMELY slow. Installation of Windows took hours. Booting to the OS; upwards of twenty minutes. A secure 3-pass wipe on a drive was scheduled to take DAYS while on an identical system the same process only took a few hours.

Overall Review: I purchased two of these boards for use as basic servers for a small business, but one had the aforementioned problem. Due to time constraints I was forced to buy a Gigabyte board locally and RMA the bad Foxconn board. Newegg was pleasant to deal with in that regard as always, but it's ridiculous that I had to RMA anything. This is the first motherboard I've ever had to RMA to Newegg, and it just "happened" to be the very first Foxconn board I've purchased from Newegg. Not sure what their response would be: "One outta two ain't bad"? Not a good start Foxconn, not a good start...